We’re having a few days away – not so much to celebrate our two month anniversary as because we actually had a clear week and decided, quite some time ago, to set aside part of it.  The timing has worked out luckily as the day we’re coming home is the day I’m going to hospital to have my pre-op assessment.

We’re staying in south Suffolk, having decided not to have far to drive.  There is lovely countryside round here and fabulous buildings, many of them going back to mediaeval days, when this was a very wealthy area because of the wool trade.  Actually, much of it still is – wealthy, that is – there was an Aston Martin parked outside the hotel when we arrived yesterday – there’s an excellent restaurant and a couple we’re having lunch – and a different one there this morning, though (yes, we kept our eye on it) the owners aren’t staying at this hotel.  Parking is in the market place just outside, it’s very convenient.

It’s a small hotel, only five bedrooms and ours has a four poster bed and a separate sitting room. It’s been owned by the same French couple for several decades and there’s a feeling of warm hospitality and attention to detail.

We thought we might spend some time in Sudbury today, but had a driving fail.  I can’t walk far, even with a stick, and we took some time to find the town centre – the road seems to spiral towards it, we went past the church several times but never at quite the same angle.  We noted that Gainsborough’s House was open so thought we’d go there and followed the sign for the short stay car park.  Having turned right,the road immediately forked and it wasn’t clear which was the correct way – evidently, we chose wrong.  And, though driving slowly, we nearly grounded on a nasty speed bump.  We tried one more circuit but we’d misplaced our way in the scheme of spiralisation and gave up and went elsewhere.  After lunch, we tried again, failed again and – do you know, we rather feel we’ve had it with Sudbury for a while.  However charming its residents may well be, getting into the place, as with many other town centres, is decidedly unwelcoming.

now, at 4 o’clock, we’ve come back to our hotel.  As it’s so small, there isn’t a desk, they leave the book open for incoming guests to sign in and put their room key on the table.  It’s really rather endearing.

3 comments on “Sodbury

  1. Blue Witch

    Sudbury (now our adopted local town, although at 20 miles away it’s not very local, it still retains a rural country charm that nowhere closer to us does), once understood, is fantastic – free parking everywhere, and small shops (many have been going for many years) sitting happily alongside chains. But, for those new to the town, I can see how the one-way system is daunting and infuriating.

    If you passed the church, I think you were in the town centre! Cars park on the long market square, and along the road, except on market days.

    The parking for Gainsborough’s House isn’t great – we usually follow up the road with it on the RHS, bear round to the right at the top of the road, and park on the RHS in the ‘layby’ ouside Vanners silk mill shop. Sometimes you can get into the street parking (about 5 or 6 spaces) on the LHS about a hundred yards before it on the RHS. Well worth a visit.

    Enjoy the rest of your break.

  2. Z Post author

    Savannah, I truly sympathise. Russell and I sometimes had to plan weeks in advance to have a day off together. It still needs planning but Tim and I are determined to have regular breaks.

    We would have gone to the church if there had been anywhere to park, BW. Indeed, if cars hadn’t wasted so much space by bad parking, there might even have been a place on the road. We never even saw a car park. I feel sorry for shopkeepers – we would have gone to the museum, had coffee, visited the church, perhaps done some present shopping; as I said, I appreciate the necessity to control cars in towns, but inadequate signage was the real problem.


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